Oozing, purulent eczema

In this article we review oozing eczema on the one hand and purulent eczema on the other hand. These are forms of eczema with several specificities in terms of symptoms and treatments.



What is oozing eczema?

Oozing eczema is part of the normal course of eczema:

  • First stage: redness appears;
  • Second stage: the redness is covered with microvesicles usually invisible to the naked eye;
  • Third stage: the microvesicles break and release their transparent liquid, this is the oozing eczema;
  • Fourth stage: the eczema plaque becomes crusty and then the skin returns to its normal appearance.

These four stages usually follow one another very quickly so that oozing eczema often goes unnoticed.

Oozing eczema is related to other


symptoms, particularly itching. Scratching is often the cause of the rupture of the microvesicles.

Oozing eczema affects children before the age of 2 years. On the cheeks, on the outer side of the limbs, on the stomach: young children often present very red and oozing plaques.

What is purulent eczema?

Purulent eczema is a specific oozing eczema in which the eczema plaques change in appearance: they become covered with fluid and then yellowish crusts due to bacterial superinfection. In this case a medical consultation is necessary.

Is oozing eczema contagious?

Oozing eczema is not contagious, since it is primarily eczema, a chronic inflammatory skin disease.

On the other hand, purulent eczema is linked to bacterial superinfection of the skin and can therefore be transmitted from one person to another if the lesions are touched. However, the contagiousness decreases as soon as treatment is initiated.

Oozing eczema: what to do?

The treatment of oozing eczema is based on the same treatments as atopic eczema, i.e. cortisone creams and emollients. Favor light textures to avoid maceration.

The treatment of purulent eczema is based on topical and/or systemic antiseptics and antibiotics. Cortisone creams are not necessarily discontinued during this period, as they help fight the inflammation of the skin.

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